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Haemanthus albiflos

Paintbrush Lily

Haemanthus albiflos

Habit: Short evergreen bulbous perennial growing up to 30 cm tall producing strap-shaped thick almost succulent leaves and paintbrush-looking flowers usually between April and July (in the southern hemisphere).

Temperature: During the growing season from spring to early fall plants grow best between 18 to 25ᐤ C; however, during late fall and winter when plants are ‘resting’, temperatures around 10ᐤ C are required to initiate flowering. Avoid temperatures below 4ᐤ C as it may result in the death of the plant.

Light Exposure: Plants grow well in bright, indirect light for best growth indoors. Avoid placing plants in direct sun or in very dark locations.

Watering: Paintbrush Lily like a moist growing medium but not soggy; water only when the top 3 cm of soil feels dry to the touch. Always check the soil moisture first but as a rule of thumb watering once a week in the rainy season, once every five or six weeks in the cold dry season and once or twice a week in the hot dry season.

Fertilising: Give plants a well balanced fertiliser twice a month during the hot dry season and rainy season but not during the cold dry season when plants are resting (semi-dormant).

Pruning/Repotting: Remove yellowing or brown leaves as necessary and cut spent flower stalks after flowering has finished. Paintbrush Lily like to be root-bound and repotting may only be needed every five or six years.

Pests/Diseases: Paintbrush Lily is relatively pest free but the leaves can be attacked by the Lily borer which can quickly eat through the leaf and then affect the bulb; currently, no known fungal pathogens cause any damage to the Paintbrush Lily.

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